Parliament sees another day of protest washing out business

RSTV Bureau
File Photo of Parliament Housing Building in New Delhi.

File Photo of Parliament Housing Building in New Delhi.

Both the houses of Parliament were adjourned for a day after massive protest erupted on multiple issues, including the Supreme Court ruling on the SC/ST Atrocities Act. Due to protest, which washed out the 18th straight day of this session, the no-confidence motion notices moved by the Opposition parties could not be taken up once again by in Lok Sabha.

The Upper House was adjourned merely six minutes in to the session after members from Congress, TMC, BSP, TDP, DMK and AIADMK took to the Well of the house even before Chairman Naidu could settle.

The protesting MPs even raised slogans during the laying of papers by the ministers, unlike other days when they have raised protest only after the formal business.

The Congress and the BSP led the charge against the government, accusing it of being against the interests of Dalit community, in an apparent reference to the Supreme Court ruling on the SC/ST Act. Other opposition party, the TMC, joined in the protest raising multi-crore PNB fraud case.

Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu based parties – AIADMK and DMK – demanded immediate formation of the Cauvery Water Management Board for division of river water between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Members of the TDP and KVP Ramachandra Rao of the Congress also held placards demanding special status for Andhra Pradesh.

“the entire country is watching … You are not going to achieve anything. You are making a mockery of parliamentary system,” Chairman Venkaiah Naidu said urging them to stop their protest and join discussions.

“The Chair was ready to allow discussion on all the issues being raised by opposition parties, and even the government as well as the opposition were ready for it,” he said.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Vijay Goel said important bills were listed for discussion in the last week of the ongoing Budget Session of Parliament. “The government is ready to discuss all issues… I don’t understand why, for small issues concerning them, they are not allowing the House to function,” Goel said.

As the protest only intensified, the Chairman adjourned the proceedings till Tuesday.

In Lok Sabha, the proceedings were first adjourned soon after it began for the day at 11AM. As the house met at noon, members of AIADMK raised slogans on Cauvery issue.

However, members of Opposition – Congress, TMC, RJD, TDP, Left and NCP – remain in their rows and instead urged the Speaker to take up no-confidence motion notices moved against the government.

While the TMC members were seated in their places, those of the TDP, which has moved a notice of no confidence against the government, were standing at their seats with black ribbons pinned to their shirts as a mark of protest.

The Speaker appealed to the AIADMK members to return to their seats saying she cannot take up the no-confidence motion unless the House is in order.

“I am duty bound to place the no-confidence motion. But this is not the way. Please go to your seats. I am not in a position to count,” Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said.

Parliamentary Minister Ananth Kumar also said the government was ready for discussion and give reply to the no-confidence motion but there has to be complete harmony in the House.

Leader of the Congress in the House Mallikarjun Kharge, who has also submitted a notice for no-confidence motion, said the opposition wanted to discuss a host of issues, including the recent Supreme Court ruling on SC/ST Act and alleged paper leak of the CBSE examinations.

However, as the AIADMK members continued raising slogans, the Speaker adjourned the House for the day.

(With inputs from PTI)